The Berlin Declaration in details

In this page, you will find more details of the Berlin Declaration, which acknowledges that the public sector is a driving force for new and innovative technological solutions for public services and societal challenges. It emphasises that public authorities at all levels must lead by example to strengthen the tenets of the European Union.

To do so, the Berlin Declaration sets out 7 key Policy Areas, related to the 7 principles on which the Declaration is based. The Policy Areas constitute the highest aggregation level of the Berlin Declaration monitoring mechanism and include then several Policy Actions to be implemented by 2024 in the Member States.

Below are the 7 key Policy Areas with the related Policy Actions that the Member States committed to achieve by 2024

1. Promote fundamental rights and democratic values in the digital sphere:

1.1. Translate abstract fundamental rights regulation into tangible policies and strive to set an example by incorporating fundamental rights into public sector innovation policies and technology procurement rules.

1.2. Engage in strategic projects with the aim of increasing awareness of the relevance of a value-based digital transformation, i.e. by building platforms to exchange and further develop national and European strategies with regard to digital transformation (“digital round tables”) and by organising cross-border and international exchange (i.e. workshops).

1.3. Encourage the establishment of ethical and technological expert councils to provide advice to and foster debate among citizens.

2. Enhance social participation and digital inclusion, to shape the digital world:

2.1. Put co-creation and collaboration with citizens into practice and encourage the use of digital tools to foster participation of citizens in political-decision-making.

2.2. Ensure that the digital transformation is inclusive of and accessible for persons with disabilities and elderly persons and increase our efforts to make public services and information fully digitally accessible in accordance with the Web Accessibility Directive and the European Accessibility Act.

2.3. Provide easy access to services for the mobile channel by enabling citizens to use their mobile devices to carry out digital public services and by cooperating at EU level in establishing necessary elements for ensuring mobile device interoperability across borders.

3. Foster digital empowerment and digital literacy, to allow all citizens to participate in the digital sphere:

3.1. Launch and promote initiatives to ensure that the general public is equipped with access and a minimum understanding of digital technologies and digital skills (i.e. online service of “digital ambassadors”).

3.2. Continue to provide easily accessible, user-friendly services and seamless digital public services, tools and applications.

3.3. Initiate workshops, training etc. in order to promote digital skills and awareness in the public sector.

4. Strengthen trust through security in the digital sphere, to allow everyone to navigate the digital world safely, authenticate and be digitally recognised within the EU conveniently:

4.1. Promote the rollout and use of notified eID means and introduce incentives for the private sector to use European trustworthy and notified eID.

4.2. Promote responsible and legally compliant re-use of data and the Once-Only Principle in line with the Tallinn Declaration and encourage new concepts such as personal data management based on user consent.

4.3. Consider ways to foster agreement on ICT security requirements.

5. Strengthen Europe’s digital sovereignty and interoperability, as a key in ensuring the ability of citizens and public administrations to make decisions and act self-determined in the digital world:

5.1. Jointly work towards agreements on requirements for technology providers and solutions in the public sector that are essential for digital sovereignty.

5.2. Implement common standards, modular architectures and – when suitable – open source technologies in the development and deployment of cross-border digital solutions.

5.3. Work with the European Commission to jointly agree on concrete deadlines and criteria such as a demand driven approach for providing further suitable public services online for EU cross-border use.

6. Create value-based, human-centred AI systems for use in the public sector, strengthening its pioneering role in the research on secure and trustworthy technology design:

6.1. Foster transparency and accountability i.e. by revealing when automated decision-making processes are used in digital public services, and ensure quality standards of data sets fed into AI systems when designing digital public services (e.g. by quality seals for data sets).

6.2. Share best practices on the development of successful human-centric AI systems in the public sector.

6.3. Stimulate knowledge sharing between practitioners of administrative innovation strategies and on examples of human centric technologies in public administrations.

7. Foster resilience and sustainability in the digital society, preserving our natural foundations of life in line with the Green Deal and using digital technologies to enhance the sustainability of our health systems:

7.1. Consider how to assess and make transparent the energy sources and consumption of digital tools and infrastructures as well as ways to improve their efficiency.

7.2. Evaluate the environmental impacts of ICT using a multi-criteria lifecycle analysis and establish a strategy to extend the lifespan of digital equipment and promote the eco-design of ICT products to improve circular product cycles.

7.3. Initiate expert consultations to provide guidelines on healthy and appropriate use of digital technologies and work-life balance to prevent adverse impact on mental or physical human health development.

7.4. Foster the exchange of crisis management data, in particular in the health sector, e.g. via the European Health Data Space.